ShutterStock uses OpenStack to reduce network latency issues

Online photo marketplace managing several petabytes of data

Online photo marketplace ShutterStock has used OpenStack software to create a cloud environment which manages several petabytes of digital photos while reducing its network latency issues.

Photographers upload content to the company’s website and sell their photos to people who need artwork for presentations or catalogues.

Speaking at OpenStack Summit 2013 in Hong Kong, ShutterStock technology operations vice president Chris Fisher told delegates that when the company began in 2003 it was handling large volumes of traffic. However, its network was struggling to cope with the amount of data.

“A lot of the needs we have are solved by OpenStack. They provide an environment that creates a usable cloud for developers but at the same time alleviate certain constraints that come from having an application that has been around since 2003.”

OpenStack is a collection of open source software for building public and private clouds.

According to Fisher, the company manages several petabytes of storage and collects over a terabyte of logs every day.

He said the company wanted a cloud environment that worked in low latencies.

“With OpenStack we created an environment where things were sitting right next to each other. This meant we could conquer a lot of our network latency problems.”

Fisher is a self-confessed open source fan simply because if something goes wrong, his developers can look at the source code and solve the problem.

“We want our developers, as well as our operations staff, writing code and sharing knowledge.”

DigitalFilm Tree

Another media company using OpenStack is US film and TV post production software company DigitalFilm Tree.

CTO Guillaume Aubuchon said DigitalFilm Tree was looking for a platform that had open standards so it could incorporate multiple software vendors.

“We needed ease of migration for when content is flowing between public and private cloud throughout the production cycle on a TV series or film. The key to our business is a file’s journey from camera to the creative process to final distribution,” he said.

The company uses OpenStack as a private cloud and Rackspace as public cloud during the production process.

To keep content secure when it is passed through the two cloud services, the company uses federated identity and user authentication.

Hamish Barwick travelled to the OpenStack Summit in Hong Kong as a guest of OpenStack

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow Techworld Australia on Twitter: @Techworld_AU

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Tags open sourceOpenStackDigitalFilm TreeShutterStockOpenStack Summit 2013

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